Shop More Submit  Join Login
×




Details

Submitted on
March 10, 2012
Image Size
15.6 MB
Resolution
4113×5926
Submitted with
Sta.sh
Link
Thumb
Embed

Stats

Views
14,316 (4 today)
Favourites
665 (who?)
Comments
59
×
Wyvern Musculature by KatePfeilschiefter Wyvern Musculature by KatePfeilschiefter
Some quickish muscle drawings, as people have been requesting wyvern anatomy and I myself have to figure out what wyverns in Aerie will look like. They'll have to exist alongside the larger hexapods without competing for the same niche. And will most likely be less intelligent and more colonial than their six-limbed cousins. A good comparison between the wyverns and the hexapods in Aerie would be that between wolves and coyotes. Farmers don't like either of them, but one is smaller, more troublesome, and much more numerous.

There are multiple ways to structure a wyvern. Whether they're bird, bat or pterosaur based.
Both of these are very bird like, with keeled sternums, coracoids and furcula.

The first wyvern walks like a bat or a pterosaur would, and can gallop quite quickly when using its wings as forearms. It's thoracic vertebrae is only partially fused, leaving the spine semi- flexible. I imagine this guy as gliding and climbing a lot. This dragon is what an early wyvern could look like when transitioning from a hexapod to a four limbed biped, depending on the phylogeny.

The bottom wyvern is essentially a modified heron, with a birds skeleton. This guy is smaller and can take off much more quickly. He's a bit more like a medieval wyvern with a snakish neck and tail, and a short bulbous midsection.
Add a Comment:
 
:iconkatepfeilschiefter:
KatePfeilschiefter Featured By Owner Mar 11, 2012  Professional Digital Artist
Thank you! I love Da Vinci
Reply
:iconkatepfeilschiefter:
KatePfeilschiefter Featured By Owner Mar 11, 2012  Professional Digital Artist
There was no specific person, multiple random people suggested a wyvern sheet.
Reply
:iconkatepfeilschiefter:
KatePfeilschiefter Featured By Owner Mar 11, 2012  Professional Digital Artist
This is a very interesting discussion. I have drawn wyverns before with small limb remnants, but as a limb at that point would be useless, I only drew the anatomy for a completely forelimbless wyvern. I typically imagine wyverns having separated from hexapods at a very early stage in the evolution of dragons, which explains why there is no visible remnant of the lost limbs. Hexapods may have kept their limbs for a number of reasons, such as it being easier to attack prey aerially with the forelimbs rather than the hindlimbs with so long of a body, they can use their front arms for digging, fighting, and manipulating objects, and they'd be likely to run more quickly on all fours than if they were bipedal.

The downsides to this is the added weight and the added length of body. A hexapodal dragon could not take off as quickly as a bird or a bird shaped wyvern. For whatever reason, some hexapods relied more on their hindlimbs for fighting and hunting than their forelimbs, and perhaps their wings were more dexterous so that they used them much more for climbing. Maybe they adopt abandoned crevices to live in rather than excavate their own, and perhaps they're less intelligent and don't use their forelimbs for manipulating objects. With the hexapods being so large and commanding the spot of apex predator, a wyvern would go the smaller and lighter route, it would like to be more compact and agile so as to escape their larger cousins. And so it does away with those useless forelimbs and shortens its body.
Reply
:iconumbbe:
umbbe Featured By Owner Mar 11, 2012  Student Digital Artist
I can't say much about the weight conservation there, but there is also the efficiency of structure - a lot of weight conservation can come from better bone structure. :V

Well, I believe the tail actually wasn't very useful for the primates after a while - it would have been too weak to support the weight of a larger ape. From my limited observation tailed monkeys are generally smaller than tailless ones.

(also there can be features that are not detrimental or advantageous - there is no environmental pressure to be rid of a feature, nor is there a lot of use for it. In these cases the useless feature may well not disappear at all.)

I still think that there is not enough time between the separation of wyverns and dragons to allow complete limb disappearance - they would need to look very different in other aspects as well to illustrate that they have separated a long time ago rather than recently. (think mammals and reptiles rather than horses and donkeys)
Reply
:iconsognodrago:
sognodrago Featured By Owner Mar 11, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
O.O
this is really well done!
all the details, and the perfect anatomy
awesome!
Reply
:iconcrovexius:
Crovexius Featured By Owner Mar 11, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
It's important to remember that weight conservation is ALWAYS an issue when it comes to flying - compare Archaeopteryx and the modern crow - they're both about the same size, but the crow will be the more efficient, (or even 'optomized'), of the two when it comes to flight simply because of the differences between them. Heck, even aircraft run to the rule of 'lighter and less pokey-out extras is better'. As for Quetzalcoatlus, its skull has ENOURMOUS fenestrae in it to lighten it, and its body wasn't very big at all - it's been estimated that even azhdarchids the size of a giraffe would only weigh up to about 250kg.

Anyways, while I don't doubt that front limbs have the possibility to be useful, I doubt that arms like that of a tyrannosaur or carnotaurus would be very good for catching prey, climbing, or even carrying things. And you have to admit that even things that are useful can get lost to evolution - our ancestors had tails after all.
Reply
:iconumbbe:
umbbe Featured By Owner Mar 11, 2012  Student Digital Artist
Well, looking at quetzalcoatl, it had an enormous head and was ridiculously large. It could probably fly very effortlessly, so a smaller animal could support a pair of front limbs as well. It would actually be disadvantageous for a wyvern to lose those frontlimbs.
I doubt their weight would add that much trouble for the wyvern, since it could easily fly via gliding.
It actually takes a lot less to fly than to run if you dont flap very much. Seems to me that the wyverns pictured here are larger than an eagle, so they would probably be gliding for the most part.

The thing is, the frontlimbs most likely wouldnt go unused - they could be used to catch prey, and to carry items (like nesting material.) It might also make climbing easier, since they wouldnt have to fortify their wings for the stress of walking on them.
Reply
:iconcrovexius:
Crovexius Featured By Owner Mar 11, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
Having front limbs that aren't used soley for locomotion can be a great advantage - look at humans, our front limbs are very useful - and being able to fly without losing that could lead to an advantage over a similarly built flying quadraped, who has to give up its front (or rear) limbs as they become wings.

Wyverns not having the third pair of limbs can have advantages if they are a small animal, as you'd have to be able to support the extra weight from the fore-limbs in flight, which would mean you'd require either more wing surface, and/or stronger/denser flight-muscles, and more energy to drive it all - and it takes far more energy to fly a given distance than it does to walk, or even run. So not having those limbs would free up all the nutrients and energy that would be going to unused front limbs so that they have more to be able to fly.

But, who knows, maybe there is a "missing link" form around somewhere with tiny little arms. They wouldn't have just suddenly dropped off, after all. :D
Reply
:iconumbbe:
umbbe Featured By Owner Mar 11, 2012  Student Digital Artist
Well, in my eyes, having the extra arms is not very detrimental at all for the wyvern. It would probably be light enough to allow flight (after all, the dragons can fly and they have six limbs), so it would be very slow to lose the limbs. Alternatively, if it is very detrimental, why are dragons thriving with six limbs?
Reply
:icondystatic-studio:
Dystatic-Studio Featured By Owner Mar 11, 2012   Digital Artist
I am interested in this person who requested you to draw wyvern anatomy, because this is actually my first impression of the dragon anatomy development. Can you answer me by note?
Reply
Add a Comment: